We love massive art projects that invite everyone to participate, and the AGO’s Portraits of Resilience project is an incredibly cool initiative that captures the essence of this era while also honouring lived experiences and emotions felt by all ages and backgrounds.

Portraits of Resilience was announced in March, to commemorate the one year anniversary of COVID-19 in Ontario, and they’ve recently extended the submission deadline to June 25th, and encourage makers of all ages to submit. 

“Resilience looks and feels different for all of us, but it is something we have all had to learn. This is a community art project and I believe, the online and in-person exhibition is a powerful declaration that will broaden our commitment to reflect the communities we serve,” said Audrey Hudson, the AGO’s Richard & Elizabeth Currie Chief, Education & Programming.

Paintings, illustrations, photos, sculptures—make something in a medium you enjoy, capture it, and submit as a high resolution digital image. Everyone who submits a piece will be added to the virtual gallery, and AGO curators will select a variety to be displayed in gallery in the future.

Browsing the submissions so far sparks a wave of mixed emotions. People have captured their pets, nature, anxiety, loneliness and so much more. Take a look for yourself and see if you’re inspired to create something to send in. What does resilience mean to you? It’s a question we’ve all asked a few times since March 2020.